Sexy Tea

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Apr 23, 2019 10:33
The other day at the airport I came across a group of foreigners (they were clearly non-Chinese). Based on the language they spoke and the accent, I think they were probably American. It looked like they’d gotten off a plane not long ago and just stepped outside the terminal. Looking here and there, they seemed to have no clue where to go.

I happened to be walking past them so I slowed my speed to see if they’d ask me for help. Somehow they didn’t notice my change of speed, so I just returned to my original pace and headed for the staircase leading down to the bottom level where the restaurant area was.

Only a few secs after I walked away from them, they started following me, so I slowed my speed again, in order to act as a temporary, unspoken guide. Many restaurants came into view as soon as we went downstairs, but the Americans still looked perplexed, perhaps because nearly all the restaurants were Chinese and they’d probably never seen them before.

We kept moving. The bewildered look on their faces finally disappeared when they spotted the white mermaid in green – the Starbucks sign. They hastened their gait and snuck into that coffee shop. However, the Starbucks wasn’t the place I was going to. Instead, it was a tea-shop chain called “Sexy Tea,” just next door to the Starbucks.

A couple days ago, I read a French Lang-8 friend’s entry saying he was very excited about having a cup of tea at a Sexy Tea. (He visited my city.) It’s true that the way the franchise makes tea is quite innovative. They combine traditional Chinese tea brewing with the way of making espresso-based drinks -- just imagine a cup of foamy oolong latte. To be honest, Sexy Tea offers a great variety of drinks than Starbucks. In addition to being roasted, tea can be processed in a greater number of ways, such as fermenting and stir-frying, and nearly every milk-adding way employed to make coffee also works well for tea. Literally every American expat I know in my city really loves Sexy Tea drinks; some of them are even thinking about bringing them back to the US.

Getting back to that group of Americans I came across at the airport, though they didn't choose the Sexy Tea, which I think they should’ve given a try, Starbucks wasn’t a bad decision anyways. After all, it takes time to discover local cuisine in an unfamiliar place. Those well-known franchises are always reliable wherever we go, because we all know they provide services and products with a constant, standard quality. That’s why two years ago I saw a Starbucks as a savior when I was strolling in Seattle, ravenous, despite knowing that there were many more coffee shops and restaurants worth trying.

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